I would like to express my profound gratitude to all who participated in Exploring Personal Prayer at Cromer and Sheringham these past weeks, and also to Fr. Denys for inviting me there in the first place. I have been moved by everyone who shared during the sessions and I am astounded and humbled at how God has moved in each one, although not particularly surprised. You have affirmed me in this role which is developing in me and you have encouraged me in the path I am following, and I am very grateful for you. I hope to work with you again.
2 thoughts on “Thank you…Cromer and Sheringham”
I hope I will get to the lovely sunflower lady who was at Sheringham last June. I tried to send an email but got the wrong address. I access emails through my local library. I’ve written about Painted Lady butterflies which we talked about. I’ll see if this reply place has room for my email but if not A Big thank you. If you answer this I’ll try again!
I’ve not forgotten meeting you when I was on holiday in Sheringham in June and I ‘gate-crashed’ on the course on Ignation prayer in the catholic church. You were talking about Sunflower Spirituality and I was raving about Painted Ladies butterflies! I’ve been thinking a lot about that question you talked about, Christ saying, ”Who am I to You?”. After some time I thought am I a Risk Taker? For some years I’ve seen my vocation as being an Edge person, and living on the edge gives more chances of risky love. But aren’t all Christians called to be risk takers? It seemed too general and the butterflies kept fluttering around in the back of my mind. Like your sunflower, they wouldn’t go away.
In the end I said, OK so I’m a butterfly, a Painted Lady to be more specific. Even though being ephemeral seemed less attractive than being something solid like a mountain it seemed I needed to follow up the prompting.
Well! All I can say is the more I thought, and continue to think, the more I learn.
First, of course is what we discussed about Painted Ladies not being painted but their true colours come by reflecting the light, like the light from Christ. Later I thought how we are all still unique individuals because our ‘construction’, what makes us us, would alter the colours as the light shines on us. We are more truly ourselves as we let the light shine on us. I could say to God, “My colour comes from Your light”.
The butterfly dances in the sun/Sun. It is, if you like, a risk taker. Risking to dance, to live and let love. Butterflies just are, like “I am” spreading joy wherever they go or are blown!
And that idea of wind-blown led me to think of being blown this way and that by the wind/Pneuma/breath of God. Butterflies are Spirit moved.
No they don’t live long and are often seen only fleetingly, but they live on in the mind. Those original Painted Ladies live on and on for me. Ephemeral means live for a day, but in the light of Christ one day is like a thousand. (Recently, again in Sheringham and this time ‘gate crashing’ in a C of E course, a lady mentioned how it’s said that movement of a butterfly’s wing can change the course of history. We don’t know how our actions can affect the world)
Just one more thing for now! Butterflies ‘kiss’ flowers. They bless them and make them fruitful. They get in close contact with the flowers and so nourish them and are nourished by them. So it is with us and the people we meet.
Each day I can use The Examen to ask, “Have I blessed today? Have I been a butterfly today? Have I been true to how Christ sees me, the reality I’m called to be?
I hope you are still happily growing as a sunflower. All I can say is thank you.
Thank you for your kind words. To find an image of ourselves as God sees us is a wonderful consolation in my experience. We start to notice our own beauty with a sense of awe, since we admire the metaphor of ourselves. And even, as in my case, if we originally see our metaphor as ordinary, by contemplating it, we see it, and ourselves, as being the work of art God intended us to be when He created us. We see with His eyes, and are drawn deeper into understanding of ourselves and love for God.